Tag Archives: raisins

Rugelach

While searching the internet for versions of the Hamanteschen, I ran across a second Jewish cookie that looked interesting; in fact, I first thought of it as a miniature cinnamon roll, and I do love a good cinnamon roll. I asked my neighbor Esther about it, and she gave me a recipe from one of her friends that has received rave reviews and has in the past been requested for many of those tables of 2-bite goodies.

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Back in December of 2009, the Oregonian newspaper in the FoodDay section, did a search for the best Rugelach in town. I think they state it best when they say “…we were pretty proud of our results — until we spent an afternoon making rugelach with Margaret Hasson.”

It is Margaret’s recipe that Esther gave to me, and after I made the recipe and took some to Esther to critique, it appeared that I didn’t need to change anything. So here is Margaret’s recipe.

Rugelach

Margaret Hasson

The Filling

Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup apricot preserves
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
Directions

Stir together in a bowl; refrigerate for a few hours or overnight.

The Dough

Ingredients
  • 1 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 8 oz. package cream cheese, softened
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
Directions

Blend butter, cream cheese and flour, either by hand or in a stand mixer. Divide dough into 3 balls. Wrap each in plastic wrap. Refrigerate 3 to 4 hours or until firm enough to roll.

Ingredients
  • 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/4 Teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 to 3 Tablespoons melted butter
  • Extra granulated sugar
Directions

Combine the cinnamon and sugar.

Putting It All Together

On a lightly floured surgace or silicon mat, roll one ball of dough into a 12-inch circle. Cut the circle into 16 wedges with a sharp knife dipped in flour. Place 1 teaspoon of filling across the wide end of each wedge. Starting at the wide end, roll toward the point.

Place cookies, point side down, on ungreased cookie sheet. Brush top of cookie with the Topping butter, sprinkle with the Topping sugar and cinnamon mixtuer.

Bake 22 minutes in a 375 degree oven.

Cool enouth to handle, remove from cookie sheet, dip bottoms of cookies in the Topping extra granulated sugar and place on wax paper to cool completely.

Makes 4 dozen cookies.

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When I rolled my dough, it was difficult to get it all the way out to a 12-inch circle, but I did get it there. The edges at that point were starting to get feathered because they were so thin. This doesn’t really matter as they get rolled into the center of the cookie.

I have read versions of this cookie that roll the dough to only 9-inch circle, and versions that cut only 12 wedges. Each of these has a result in the size of the cookie, making it either thicker or wider. I like Margaret’s 12-inch, 16 wedge size as a nice 2-bite size.

The filling is very sticky; try to get it in the center of the wide end of the wedge so that it doesn’t come out the sides as you roll the cookie.

Zucchini Squash Bread

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Zucchini bread is a sweet bread somewhat like Steamed Bread Pudding. But you make it in a couple regular loaf pans, so it is easier. This recipe was given to Marlys by Connie Mayo who was a bridge playing friend. I hope you can try the recipe and find it as a good dessert bread.
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Zucchini Squash Bread

(Connie Mayo 1973)

  • 3 eggs. beaten light and foamy
  • 1 cup oil
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups grated zucchini squash
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup raisins

Pour into two greased loaf pans (or three small loaf pans). Bake at 325°F for 1 hour. Remove from pans at once and cool on rack. Bread freezes well.


When I made zucchini bread last year, I had a couple problems. First, the temperature of the oven was not calibrated and was running hotter than the dial said. This caused the bread to cook too quickly on the outside, and not be able to rise. The moral of that tail is to cook slower and longer, rather than hotter and faster. Once I determined the problem, I was able to get nice fat loaves of bread consistently.

The second problem I had was in releasing the bread from the loaf pans. I probably didn’t grease the pans enough. I am now using the cooking spray and am not having any problem. I have started putting a piece of parchment paper in the bottom of the loaf pans; this is because when I put the bread on the cooling rack, the rack cut into the soft bread. Now, I leave the parchment paper on the bottom of the bread while it cools to give a better surface against the cooling racks.
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I am tenting all my breads for the last 10-15 minutes of their bake time. I felt that the top crust of the bread was over cooked and too thick. Tenting seems to reduce that problem. I have only seen tenting explicitly called out in one recipe, the Dilly Bread recipe, but I am doing it with all my bread baking, including this zucchini bread.

Finally, the recipe calls for 2 cups of grated zucchini; I measured the weight on my scales and found that the 2 cups was about 10 ounces. So if you have a pound of zucchini, by the time you cut the stem end off, and maybe the flower end, you probably are in the ballpark of 10-12 ounces, or 2 cups of grated zucchini.

When I eat zucchini bread, I like to spread it with either sour cream, or softened cream cheese. Because it is sweet, you don’t need any sweet spread.